Tantalum is one of the most inert, unreactive metals known. Its primary use is in high power electronic capacitors and resistors. It is one of the best metals for this purpose as it confers a high capacitance in a small volume, offering size and weight advantages in sophisticated hand-held electronic devices such as mobile phones and portable computers.
The chemical inertness of tantalum allows its use to medical and dental applications since the metal does not interact with body tissues. It is used in artificial hip and knee joints, as well as pins, screws, staples, and other devices used to hold bones together.
Tantalum is also used to produce superalloys that have high melting points, excellent strength and good ductility. Tantalum alloys are used in laboratory equipment, writing pen tips, and tools that operate at high speeds and temperatures.